The great Dallas Willard passed away yesterday and Jesus followers all over the world mourn the loss of one of Christendom’s greatest minds.
It has long been my contention that much of what we see emerging from the church today: from the actual “emergent” movement, to the Shane Claiborne/social justice crowd, to Willow Creek’s renewed focus on discipleship, to the “missional” cohorts, all of it is response to Willard’s monumental work, The Divine Conspiracy. Starting pulling on the thread of any of these movements and you don’t have to unravel much to get to Willard.
On a personal level, Divine Conspiracy was the first book I read “for fun” after graduating from college and it profoundly shaped not only my thinking but practical decisions about my vocation.
So, thank you Dallas, for calling us to actually follow Jesus, the master teacher, to be his disciples, and for reminding us of the counter-intuitive power of the upside down kingdom.
Also, Willard taught at the most revered institution of higher education in our household: the University of Southern California.
Fight On, Dallas.